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Sound Insulation

Document E

Building Regulations Approved Document E is concerned with the passage of sound for dwelling houses and flats and for rooms for residential purposes, both new constructions and as a result of a material change of use. It deals with the Requirements of Part E of Schedule 1 to the Building Regulations 2000 (as amended by SI 2002/2871):

E1 - Protection against sound from other parts of the building and adjoining buildings.
E2 - Protection against sound within a dwelling-house etc.
E3 - Reverberation in the common internal parts of buildings containing flats or rooms for residential purposes.
E4 - Acoustic conditions in schools.

Document E is separated into 9 sections. Sections 0 is concerned with performance standards and these are shown in the tables below.

Section 1 covers testing procedures and sections 2 to 8 give guidance on constructions to achieve the standards set out in section 0.

The construction types affected by section number are:

2. Separating walls and associated flanking constructions for new buildings.
3. Separating floors and associated flanking constructions for new buildings.
4. Dwelling-houses and flats formed by material change of use.
5. Internal walls and floors for new buildings.
6. Rooms for residential purposes.
7. Reverberation in the common internal parts of buildings containing flats or rooms for residential purposes.
8. Acoustic conditions in schools.

British Standards

The British Standards that are most relevant to aspects of sound reduction including the use of plasterboard and associated products are as follows:

BS2750: 1980  Measurement of sound insulation in buildings and of building elements.
BS5821: 1984 Methods of rating the sound insulation in buildings and building elements.
BS8000: Part 8: 1994 Code of practice for plasterboard partitions and dry linings.
BS8212: Part 1: 1995 Code of practice for dry lining and partitioning using gypsum plasterboard.
GPDA  Acoustic document – Sound Separation – Acoustic Solutions using Gypsum Products.
DETR ‘Quiet Homes Manual’

Note: there are regional differences in regulations for Scotland and the Republic of Ireland.

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